Community-based outpatient clinics that provide comprehensive primary health care by a team of health professionals with services that include physical examinations, immunizations, family planning, nutrition assistance, health education and promotion, rehabilitation, and the diagnosis and treatment of common ailments reflecting the needs of the targeted community or neighbourhood. Many health centres provide accessible care in northern and rural communities, in communities where many people have a high risk of ill health or to individuals and families with significant access issues, such as members of ethnocultural communities, refugees or people who are homeless.
Departments within hospitals or freestanding clinics operated by hospitals or hospital systems that are designed for the diagnosis and treatment of people with health problems who do not currently require a bed or admission for overnight care. Outpatient departments offer a wide range of treatment services, diagnostic tests and minor surgical procedures.
Programs that use specially equipped mobile vehicles to deliver basic health care services to vulnerable and/or remote populations that are unable to access a community health care facility. The mobile clinics make scheduled stops in different neighbourhoods and offer a wide variety of services which may include general physical examinations, pediatric services, health screening, vision screening, flu shots, childhood immunizations, laboratory services, STD screening and treatment, family planning services, pregnancy testing and treatment for minor illnesses. Included are street medicine programs that use outreach workers to seek out and provide primary health care services for unsheltered homeless people living on the streets, under bridges, in abandoned buildings or wherever else they stay.
Community-based outpatient clinics staffed by physicians, nurses and nurse practitioners that provide confidential clinical and counselling services that address sexual and reproductive health. Services typically include birth control counselling; birth control; condoms; emergency contraceptive pills; STD/STI testing and treatment; HIV testing; pregnancy testing, counselling and referral; and sexuality and relationship counselling.
Programs that provide treatment services for people who have medical conditions that require urgent treatment but not a visit to a hospital emergency department. Many of these programs are set up as distinct clinics within hospitals and can administer treatment for acute medical conditions including heart attacks, minor day surgery procedures, fractures and lacerations, while also providing access to X-ray and other diagnostic equipment. Although they are generally open for extended hours, most urgent care centres do not operate on a 24/7 basis.
Programs that provide walk-in treatment services for people who have minor illnesses or injuries that do not require a visit to a hospital emergency department or an urgent care facility. These programs are generally specialized practices set up by groups of physicians operating within the provincial/territorial heath system who are available for patients that do not have family physicians or who need medical treatment and/or diagnosis at times when their family physician is not available. In some areas, a walk-in clinic may rotate between the clinics of different physicians. Some programs, mainly in major metropolitan areas, may operate on a 24-hour basis but all tend to be open for some or all evenings and weekends.
The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.